If you’re a geek, you probably get a little jittery when you’re away from the web for more than a couple of hours. If you have an iPhone, you’ve proven my point. If you don’t have an iPhone, then you want one, so again my point is proven. If you don’t even want an iPhone, you’re not really a geek.
If you’re a GeekDad or GeekMom, you have probably gone on vacations with your family. And you’ve probably noticed that, no matter how relaxing the vacation is, no matter how great it is to spend lots of time with your spouse and kids, there’s part of you that wants to get online for a few hours every day. Some vacations let you do this, but a lot of them, especially cruises, either don’t let you or make it really inconvenient.
I’ve been on two cruises in my life. The first, in 1999, had no net access at all. The second, in 2005, had net access, but it was slow and expensive. I enjoyed both vacations, but not without some difficulty repressing the part of my brain that wanted to connect with the world.
Now, though, I’ve heard about InSight Cruises (which used to be called "Geek Cruises"). I haven’t tried them out, unfortunately, but they sound ideal for geek families. They have the brilliant idea of combining education with cruising. Want to become an Apple Certified Support Professional while on vacation? You can do it. You can also watch Shakespeare productions and learn more about the plays in between ports-of-call in the Caribbean, attend scientific workshops about evolution while going through the Panama Canal, or hear and learn about opera while cruising Alaska’s coast, among others.
The cruises aren’t cheap by any means, because you have to pay the Holland America cruise prices and additional fees for the productions, lectures, workshops, etc. But man, does it ever sound worth it! They get a remarkable selection of people and groups to participate, including John de Lancie (Q himself!), Ira Flatow of NPR’s Science Friday, the Metropolitan Opera Guild, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, and Scientific American. And they give you ample time to do the relaxing and fun stuff that makes going on a cruise worthwhile.
They have lots of stuff for kids to do on board, which allows you to go to the educational programs without being too concerned about the kids getting into trouble or getting bored. And, should that not be enough, the InSight website has an entire section devoted to convincing your spouse to go. Of course, given the current state of the U.S. economy, the hardest part might be finding the available funds to go, but it sure sounds like a good time to me.
And, seriously, how many cruise companies do you know of that have their own podcast?